Quilting Day by Day

It started with a tree … (part 1)

“I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree…”

This is what you call an original design on the fly, starting in my head and then moving to fabric and I’m trying to remember to take pictures all along the way so you can see how this one goes together.

I wanted a brown background with a set in tree trunk so I could add appliquéd leaves.  I cut the brown to about 48 inches wide and the lighter greyish brown to the height I wanted the tree trunk to be, then estimated the width for the trunk and laid it on top of the background.  I used a chalk marker to draw a slight curve down each side of the trunk and then cut through both the lighter and background fabrics at once.  This way, the edges match when you attach the trunk to the background on either side.  As you can see, after I drew my lines I changed my mind (typical in my studio!) so I cut just outside the lines.

(Save that piece underneath because it’s also a tree trunk if you want to do a similar quilt in a different background color!  You would then have to lay it on the new fabric and cut that background along the trunk edges to make them match.)

I flipped the trunk over and pinned it to the background fabric edges, and with a little maneuvering at each end where the curves happen, it all went together easily.

Of course I wasn’t quite convinced it was done, so before adding the top and bottom sections I curved out part of the trunk top – using the same method as I did when I cut the trunk and background together – and sewed the curved piece in.  The seam allowance needed to insert that little curved piece did of course mean that I had to even up the top edge before adding the top section of brown fabric (and no, those little wrinkles near the trunk top are not tucks or puckers, they are there from when I pressed the back side of that seam and will be taken out before I start appliquéing).

After I added the top section, I again changed my mind!  I had planned to leave a big brown area at the top, but once it was on I chose to trim a piece off and add it to the bottom.  Now I think it’s all ready for leaves and maybe other things that will remain a surprise for now, so stay tuned!


(Darn, now I’m looking back up at that quote from Trees and getting ideas about stitching it into the quilt!  That might be just a bit too ambitious for today.  But like I said, “an original design on the fly”. LOL)



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